Last night was finally my swim clinic with Karlyn Pipes-Nielsen. After flight delays and bad weather, she was able to make it into Tulsa and hold her clinic, which was originally scheduled for Tuesday. Karlyn was a very bubbly person with great incite and experience to try and help a poor sinking soul like mine. Swimming has definitely been a challenge for me and I have a love/hate relationship with it. I have a hard time giving up on something, but I have wanted to quit swimming more times than I can count. I am better than when I started, but I have a long way to go.
We started the clinic by doing some breathing drills in the water and also learning how to gain time by the push off in the pool. I have struggled with the breathing for a long time and I learned some great tips. We then were videotaped for analysis of our swim technique. If you have never seen yourself swim, I would advise not to, unless you look like Michael Phelps. We then went into the classroom for some instruction and DVD training. We watched parts of her DVD and went through some sheets of instruction and tips. Then on to the personal video tapes. I watched my self swimming and it kind of reminded me of Gumby trying to swim. I pull my arms too far back and lift my head up too far. I do that because of the feeling that unless I breathe soon, I will die. It was kind of painful to watch, but none the less, good entertainment.
We went back into the pool for some more training drills. One thing that she does is have you try a new drill and go back to your old way and see if you can feel the difference. I could feel a big difference in my technique and hers. Mine required a lot more effort and hers was a lot less strength and more technique. I still struggled through this and thought I would never catch on. I finally started to get some of the drills down, but it was time for more videotaping. Twice in one day of humility of watching yourself flounder around in a pool.
We went one last time into the conference room and watched ourselves and got critiqued as to any improvement we had made and what else we could work on. I could not tell much difference in how I swam. It still looked bad to me. My hope is that after time it will sink in and I can improve. It sure does look good on her.
Overall the clinic was very good and well run. She was very positive and encouraged everybody with simple tips and instruction. It was worth the money and after more practice I would do it again. Hopefully at that time I can I say I swam like a fish.